How to Sell Value not Price
Selling Value and our ability as sales people to communicate that value to our prospects, is a common challenge for most sales people in todays competitive marketplace. If your product or service has become commoditised, if your deals are mostly price driven and/or the market is very transactional in nature, it can be difficult to differentiate yourself from the competition. This can be very frustrating when you lose sales deals because the buyer has neither recognized nor understood the Value you deliver, and yet you know for sure you are better than the competition. Well the following sales strategy on how to sell value not price won’t work every time, but it will make a huge difference if you as a sales director, sales manager or sales person and can execute it consistently and confidently.
In order to Sell Value we first need to understand what Value is and what our Value Proposition is, because the two may be slightly different. Our Value Proposition is a clear and concise sales message on why choose us for a specific target audience. Every business should have at least one, and they should be created jointly by sales & marketing. Most businesses will have a general value proposition with more defined propositions for individual products, services or campaigns. Value on the other hand, may well differ for every buyer, as human beings are all individuals, which means that they may have personal preferences, needs or desires which creates a definition of Value that is unique to them.
How NOT to Sell Value
Answer the question “Why should I buy from you?” If your answer is anything along the lines of “because we have a great track record, we have brilliant customer service, reliability, history, expertise etc” then stop. These are “Me to” statements that every sales person makes. Clearly not every company can be the “Number 1, the best or Leaders” so what happens is the buyer sees no clear point of difference and then chooses the point of difference that works best for him – this is always price.
How to Sell Value Not Price
- If at all possible get a personal referral from one of your existing happy customers who is already experiencing Value from your relationship. If not then …
- Make sure you are in front of the right buyer. You have a sweet spot in terms of the people who will buy from you, so make sure you are in front of your perfect prospect by profiling your prospects correctly. The best Value Proposition will still fail in front of the wrong buyer. Be disarmingly honest and tell the buyer what the right type of client for you is, including how you are NOT a good fit for companies that are price driven, as buyers typically don’t see the added Value you provide until after they have purchased and experienced your product/service. Don’t be afraid to share some business humility as this is a sign of strength and leadership.
- Ask questions to understand what the buyer perceives as Value as without this we can only guess what the right Value Proposition will be. This might sound simply like “Would you mind sharing with me the top 3 things you are looking for when you are selecting new IT suppliers?”
- Once you understand the Value the buyer is looking for, use a Customer Story to demonstrate that Value. For example, if Project Management is important to the buyer then tell them a story how you went “above and beyond” to satisfy a project delivery for one of your clients. If the Value the buyer is looking for is in Customer Service then tell them a story of how you provide “exceptional” customer service.
Learning how to sell value not price will immediately set you apart and differentiate yourself from the competition. Ultimately people buy from people and your personal and relationship building skills are also an important differentiator. Most importantly, if you don’t win then still keep in touch as a NO rarely means No not ever, it usually only means No Not Now. Circumstances, people and requirements all change over time and you need to keep front of mind for when the buyer is ready to change.
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